The Carolina Rider

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Got your bells on? Saturday at 1:32pm we ring in the Vernal Equinox - Spring! Even tho I have some resentment about losing that hour this weekend, just the little extra light at the end of the day is startin' to rev my engines... how 'bout you? As I look at our CALENDAR I see more and more riding opportunities getting closer and closer.
But, as we're hearing, some of you haven't waited for the light or heat to show've been riding thru it all. And I want to express my sincere appreciation for those of you readers who have written me and shared your riding stories through sun, rain, sleet, and snow. I'm happy to give you voice in our READERS RESPOND section below and look forward to hearing from more and more riding readers along the road. Looks too like we have some budding writers out there....some of you are in full bloom.....lookout Carolinas!

Question of the week....anyone buying a new or new-to-you bike this season ...or recently purchased one? Whatcha buying? What'd ya buy? Yeah, things are slow and folks aren't buyin' much but I'm starting to hear some whispers here and there that there's a tiny little bit of cash itchin' new rides out of some pockets. Do tell! Even if some of us can't buy our own new blaster, we sure enjoy hearing about others' good fortunes!

" Go on now, squeeze out every drop of sweetness on your ride today!"
Fancy Free, Site Editor
The Carolina rider dot com


Readers Respond

You guys are the greatest! Thanks for all of your thoughts about all-weather riding! Here are some more....

"The coldest I have ever ridden is 25 degrees at Christmas time in Cody, WY. The snow was all around but not on the roads. I had more layers on than I can remember and could barely stand up but was fine, even with only a doo rag on. My wife looked like the Michelin man in her coveralls and full face. We live in Charleston and ride all year long no matter the temp. That's what leather and under armor are for.
To the far other end of the thermometer, the hottest I can think of was renting a bike in Las Vegas. When we left the dealership it was 120! We rode to Mt. Charleston, elevation 12000 ft. When we started at the bottom in the valley it was still 120 in the shade. We were in t-shirts. When we got to the top, people were wearing parkas and it had dropped to 50. We were freezing standing outside drinking a beer at the lodge while everyone else was wrapped in coats. We left and rode back down and it started warming up around 5000 ft. When we got to the bottom it went back to about 115 but felt good. Hot or cold, if its sitting in your garage and you're not riding it, you wasted your money." (Anonymously Submitted)

Bill from Orangeburg, SC says "19 F was my coldest 117 F was my hottest preferred temp 70 F"

Jon shares the following: "Love the Carolina Rider site..... keep it up. Well, where do I start? I moved here from a few years ago Malaysia where I ran a company and also owned a 1997 Low Rider. Every day was 80 Deg plus. Chickens and mongoose were the worst things to meet on the road as there was many of them. There was also the odd snake, mainly Cobras and if you ran over them, they usually got stuck in your front wheel and you had to stop and find a stick to remove them ..... A difficult task as they were usually still alive, although very dizzy. I arrived in this country with Motorcycle licenses from 5 countries, had been riding since I was 16 and still had to go to Jon Pendleton for my driving skill lessons at CPCC followed by the DOT questions, which I did December last in the rain and frost. I purchased a Harley Davidson Electra Glide at a bankruptcy Auction (I am also an auctioneer), had it checked and cleaned and donned my winter woollies, gloves and Harley Jacket. My fairings kept me warm when the frosts had melted with the advent of daylight and I persevered daily until the warmth hit over the last few weekends. Am not sure if my zealousness with stay with me for next winter as the joys of riding in the warmth has brought out a lot of bikers who make you feel part of the movement with their low waves with their left hand as they pass you. This was missing on the lonely roads of the cold. I have ridden for a couple of Sundays with a Harley Davidson group who end up at The Kickstand Bar and grill on HWY 97 just out of Lancaster, SC, near Lake Wateree. Last weekend there would have been over 300 bikes there... What a wonderful sight. As the heat comes, perhaps the Mountains will beckon me with the temptation of cooler air. BUT.... not enough lady bikers out there either owners or pillion passengers. I have a spare seat for those that wish to try. In the interim, here is a picture of my HD with a female rider dressed in fur. Perhaps I will bring her on one of your future planned rides."

Al says "Like the postman, sleet, snow, rain, or cold will not stop me from riding. That is why I have dead cows all over me. Keep up the good work."

Gene from Spartanburg shares "I enjoy your column. I ride my bike almost everywhere I go. I live in Spartanburg and work in Greenville and ride my bike to work every day. The only days I did not ride this winter were the snow/sleet days. As a matter of fact I would much rather ride with the temperature in the teens than in the upper 90s. I rode down to Daytona for the first weekend of Bike week and camped out. I could only get two days off of work so I left on Thursday morning and returned two days later on Saturday. The weather was indeed cold. Someone at the campground said it was 37 degrees when I crawled out of my tent on Friday morning. Frost was all over everything. It was raining Saturday morning while I was packing up my tent to head back but the rain stopped before I got to Jacksonville. My odometer turned over 60,000 miles on that trip."

Tammy writes in "Tuesday when the weather was up in the 70's my husband telephoned and told me to have sandwhiches ready and jeans on that we were going riding. Man what a beautiful day it was. We rode out to Parr and enjoyed the scene of people fishing in the lake and then over to some friends for some good home made wine. Later ending at the Dam Bar and Grill in Lexington, SC for a dinner with friends."

The Carolina Rider Sponsored Event

The Carolina Rider dot com and Mad Dog Custom Cycles is sponsoring the upcoming Gumball Rally on Saturday March 27th that begins and ends at Knights Stadium in Fort Mill, SC (Exit 88 off of I-77) and benefits the Tega Cay Lions Club that does lots of good in their community. You'll get a gumball at each stop and you can cash in the gumballs for 5 tickets for each ball. There will be a drawing and half the fees collected - up to $1,000 - will be given away! The more tickets you have, the more chances you have to win the big money. Ride stops include Cox Harley-Davidson in Rock Hill, Alpha Motorsports in Rock Hill, Matthews Fun Machines in Matthews, Charlotte Honda in Charlotte, Harley-Davidson of Charlotte in Matthews, Mad Dog Custom Cycles in Lake Wylie, The Tilted Kilt in Charlotte, and Steve's Bar and Grill in Tega Cay. You can get a suggested map to follow or go your own way. It's $20/rider with FBO at 10am and LBO at 1pm. I intend to do what I can to make this a fun and successful event and hope to see you there too.


Quick little Links, Stats, 'n News to chew on....

The Tax Man Giveth......New motorcycles purchased in '09 mean a tax deduction for you in '10. Check out here for full details.

And I see that H-D has their own economic stimulus package goin' on too. Check it out .....

NC State HOG Rally News

The North Carolina Harley Owners Group (H.O.G) has announced the line-up of activities for their annual Rally weekend.. The 2010 NC State H.O.G. Rally will be held Thursday, June 17 - June 19 in Matthews, NC, at the Harley-Davidson of Charlotte Dealership, 9205 E Independence Blvd.

This year's rally, anchored by a private VIP Event at the new, NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, NC, will afford H.O.G. members a total immersion into racing and its history. Biker Olympic field games will challenge the best, to show the rest. Visits to the race shops will show how teams make the grade, the gigantic vendor field will amaze the rally attendees, and the women and kids exclusive events will give the rally a family twist.

Attendees are encouraged to register early and be entered to win one of 500 chances to ride around Charlotte Motor Speedway on Friday, June 18, discounted NASCAR car ride-along and driving experience with Buck Baker Racing, and van tours of the speedway and Z-Max drag strip.

Come be a part of one of North Carolina's largest vendor areas (over 3 acres), offering food, drink, parts and accessories, clothing, crafts, and much more. Discounted hotel room rates and reduced prices on main attractions in the Charlotte area will be offered throughout the week.

Vendors interested in obtaining a space in the corral, please contact:
Jon Pendleton
704-469-9091 or 704-236-9222

For more information and registration, please visit

About H.O.G:
Harley-Davidson established the Harley Owners Group in 1983 in response to a growing desire by Harley riders for an organized way to share their passion and show their pride. Today, more than a million members make H.O.G. the largest factory-sponsored motorcycle organization in the world. For more information: 

Charlotte H.O.G Chapter, Rally Committee: Debbie Norris, Communications Chair, 704.763.9673 or


And so the fun begins....
On Saturday I ran by H-D of Charlotte's St. Patty's Day and chili cook-off event. The weather was so-so...almost warm, almost not. Mostly no rain but there were some really nasty looking clouds. Nevertheless, it was still a good event.THE WINNERS.....HD Charlotte Chili Cookoff: they are 1st Rick Wagoner, 2nd Steve Mills, 3rd Rick (Pee Wee) Williams. Congratulations!! Have a look at some of the pictures in our GALLERY.

Sunday I joined the crowd at The Tilted Kilt as they kicked off the first of many Sunday Biker Brunches. They started at 11am and the sun showed up and for awhile but shortly went behind the clouds and it turned cold. I still enjoyed myself.... the band, the drink specials,the food....and did I say the girls were HOT!!! About 70 or so bikes showed up and I encourage you to up the numbers next week and make this new venue the place to be on Sundays. 11am until 3pm at the Tilted Kilt. Go check out these pictures too!
Enjoying The Ride,
Jon "Footloose" Pendleton


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